Technical

This article will answer all your questions for the replica watches and their specifications

Technical

People are often confused by all the different specifications, so we hope this article will answer all your questions for the replica watches.

There is big number of qualities for the replica watches sold on internet today, but in general they can be subdivided into 2 categories – the low and the high quality replicas.

Low quality is mostly the quartz movement replicas that are available even in the streets. You can spot them from a mile that they are a fake so we will not talk about them here.

The second category is high quality replicas. They have automatic movements and their construction and parts vary. They come from factories in Indonesia, Taiwan, Japan, China, Malaysia, Korea and Switzerland.

Movement

Movements
The movement is the heart that powers the watch and keeps the seconds hand sweeping. There are over 20 different types of Japan-Asian made automatic movements. They vary in quality, durability and time keeping accuracy. There are Asian made movements with or without sweeping second hands than can last you from 3 months for the low quality and up to a year or two for the better quality.

The “Swiss ETA” copies are manufactured by a number of Asian factories and they come in different build qualities. Depending on the factory these movements can last from 1-4 years, with the average being approximately 1-2 years.

And finally there are the genuine Swiss made ETA movements witch are the best in quality, durability and life expectancy. These movements are built to Swiss-made standards by the ETA SA and they will not “choke” as the Asian movements do. They have flawless sweep seconds hand motion and excellent time keeping accuracy.

Based on these Swiss ETA calibers a new generation of Swiss Clone movements has appeared. These Clone movements replicate the appearance of the in-house Swiss calibers by having the same engravings, rotors, bridges and wheel colors but underneath lies a genuine Swiss ETA movement with the heart been the genuine Swiss balance spring. So in terms of quality, durability and life expectancy they are exactly the same as the genuine Swiss ETA movements since they are based upon them and they have been replicated in Switzerland with Swiss-made standards.

They can last you up to 50 years if serviced regularly. These movements are very rare and expensive and you can find them only in genuine Swiss made replicas. They cost from $300 to $900 and the watches that feature these movements cost from $1000 to $1700.

Crystal

Crystal
The crystal of the watch covers and protects the dial of the watch. In order for a watch to be waterproof the crystal must be installed with the proper gaskets and it has to be strong enough to withstand the pressure of the depth that the watch is certified for. There are plastic, mineral and sapphire crystals.

Plastic crystals are used mostly in cheap watches today.
Mineral crystals, though they aren’t scratchproof, they are far more durable than the plastic ones. All Asian replica watches have mineral crystals on them despite the claims of their dealers that they have sapphire ones.

Sapphire crystals are virtually scratchproof and they are made from natural or synthetic sapphire.

Sapphire crystals are used on all high-end Swiss watches. They can withstand big pressures but they tend to crack on high impact, because of their hardness. All genuine Swiss made replicas have sapphire crystals on them and you can even see the difference in clarity and shine compared to the mineral ones.

Day-Date Wheels

Day-Date Wheels
The day-date wheels refer to the font type and background color of the day-date indications seen on the face of the watches. It’s a very significant detail because manufacturers use a very unique type and size of font to avoid counterfeits.

Asian made replicas use a slightly different style and size font than the genuine watches because they are mass produced and they can’t update the wheel style with high accuracy and in time.

Only the genuine Swiss made replicas use a virtually exact day-date wheels.
However, it’s very hard to tell by the day-date wheel because different models and production year of the genuine Swiss watches have slightly different day-date wheels.

Crown

Crown
The crown is the stem used to adjust the day-date and time of the watch. There are a lot types of crowns from regular to screw-down.

The regular crowns are mostly used in low depth rated watches. They are simple to manufacture and their waterproof ability is limited.

Then we have the extra pressure crowns. These are crowns that accept a pressure force from some kind of leverage system that press them against the case so they seal better since the rubber seals are pressed down. These types of crowns can be used in watches with waterproof levels from 100 to 200 meters.

Finally we have the screw-down crowns. These crowns blot to a tube that is fitted on the watch case and as they screw-down they press the rubber seals between the crown and the tube. They have huge waterproof ability so they are mostly used on diver’s watches. They can seal up a watch to a depth of 12000 meters!

Case

Case
The case is the body of the watch and it carries the movement, dial, back cover, pushers and Helium Escape Valve’s. It also attaches the 2 ends of the band.

Most cases are made from a single piece of metal witch makes them stronger and easier to be water sealed. Also there are other cases that consist of several metal and synthetic parts that seal all together with screws and bolts.

Asian cases are usually made from brass and then plated with either stainless steel or fake gold. They do this because it is cheaper to use brass/copper instead of stainless steel and gold. This makes the case weaker. However, the Asian movement will break before your case does.

Some Asian factories use real solid 316L stainless steel to construct the case but size and dimensions can be very different from the genuine watch.

Swiss made replicas are always crafted from solid 440 or 904L stainless steel. 904L is a very hard and difficult to work with type of steel and Rolex uses it for their timepieces. 904L is extremely resistance against corrosion and highly polish able. The top quality Swiss replicas crafted from 904L steel are very rare and expensive. Swiss made replica cases are very strong and they withstand the pressure of 100 or even 300 meters of diving.

Asian factories use fake gold platting on their gold models witch starts to fade from the first day you wear it.
Swiss made replica cases are wrapped with real 18ct gold or heavy plating exactly as some of the genuine Swiss watches do.

Gold

Gold
Gold is one of the biggest concerns for all replica watch buyers, because bad gold screams “I’m a replica” right away.

There are a lot of types of gold finishes. You can find fake gold plating, genuine gold plating with different thickness level, gold wrapped, gold PVD plating and solid gold.

Cheep replicas and most of Asian made replicas have fake gold on them because it’s by far the cheapest and it looks like brass instead real gold.

Genuine gold plating uses a thin, 5 microns, layer of 14k gold and most of the Asian made replicas use it.
Just for comparison: an average newspaper page is about 60 to 70 microns thick. This means the gold is really thick and will eventually wear off in 3-5 months from the time you wear it. This is the reason why almost all dealers who offer Asian replicas only give you a 90 day or 6 month guarantee.

Globally-known Swiss watch brands like Tissot, Longines and many others are using gold plating on a large scale. Their watch cases employ a gold coat of at least 10 microns, which became somewhat a standard in the watch industry. Even better are cases coated with 20 microns, which with a caution everyday use is good enough for an entire watch life, without the base metal ever shining through.

Gold wrapped watches have a thick layer of gold that is about 25 to 30 microns thick! This type of plating is used on Swiss made replicas and it will last you 10 to 20 years depending on how you wear the watch and by the gold layer thickness.

Gold PVD plating can be found only on the genuine Swiss made replicas and it will last you 10 to 20 years depending on how you wear the watch. A gold PVD layer is no more than 10 microns but underneath that a layer of titanium nitride is first applied on the steel surface. TiN is gold colored and extremely hard to be scratched and reveal the steal.

No replica watch manufacturer uses solid gold on their watches. Solid gold watches are crafted from solid 18k gold. These are found only on the top level Swiss watches.

When purchasing a gold plated or wrapped or PDV plated watch (replica or not), keep these facts in mind about the gold.

A very important thing about gold is the color. Gold on Swiss watches and Swiss replicas has the same color as the solid gold watches but when time passes the gold may change its color. Gold is a soft metal and when it comes in contact with other metals or hard surfaces a small amount of it may come off. Salt water, sweat and chemicals also contribute to the gold color change.
A huge factor is the way you wear your watch. If you wear it carefully and avoid contact with water, soap, perfumes, sweat and scratches then your gold watch will last you a lifetime. But if you want a carefree gold watch then a Swiss solid gold watch is what you are looking for. But even this will need a polish once every 5 years so you get the scratches off.
Gold on Asian replicas is either too brow or too bright compared to a genuine Swiss solid gold watch. If you compare the cheap replicas with a real Swiss solid gold watch you will see the difference!

Bezels

Bezels
Bezel is the ring element around the crystal, which can be functional or have only a cosmetic value.

Bezels can be unidirectional which turn counter-clockwise, bi-directional which turn both ways or fixed that do not move. Usually they are crafted from the same material as the case and there are bezels crafted from synthetic materials and others that have ceramic, aluminum or stone (diamonds, rubies etc) inserts on them.

On cheap Asian made replicas you can find loose bezels which fall off, incorrect printings or engravings and even wrong click positions. They can be either too lose, or too tight and they tend to fade.

Only the genuine Swiss made replicas have flawless bezels. They are constructed 100% same as the genuine and they feel 100% as the genuine bezel does. Achieving this level of perfection is a very expensive task and that is why the genuine Swiss made replicas are much more expensive than the mass produced Asian ones.

Diamond Markers

Diamond Markers
Diamonds found on many genuine Swiss watches and on replicas as well. They are placed on the faces, the band, the case or the bezel. Genuine Swiss watches that use real diamonds are very expensive. Since real diamonds are too expensive to be used on replicas, the replica manufactures are using other materials on their diamond models.

On Asian made replicas diamonds vary from plastic crystal to mineral stones and to low quality cubic Zirconia stones on their highest quality models. Plastic crystals usually fall off or scratch and they tend to look fake because light does not reflect from them crisply, and you can see the dull surfaces of the plastic.

Mineral crystals are better than the plastics, they stay on longer, they tend to scratch and will eventually crack or fall off if banged hard against something. Upon close inspection they look fake because they don’t nearly have the glare and light reflection of a diamond.

Genuine Swiss made replicas carry top quality cubic Zirconia stones or real Moisanite diamonds. Highest quality cubic Zirconia stones look almost the same as diamonds but they tend to cloud up after a while, and must be polished to maintain their glare.
Moisanite diamonds look exactly like the real diamonds and they even reflect the light better than the real diamonds. Replicas with Moisanite diamonds definitely worth the extra money compared to the ones with cubic Zirconia stones.

Screws And Pins

Screws And Pins
The band of watches usually consists of links which are held together either by pins or screws. All top level Swiss manufactures uses screws on their metal bands.

Asian made replicas usually have bands which are held together by pins. This is a dead giveaway because Rolex and many other high quality Swiss watch bands are held together by screws. On some top quality Asian made replicas you can find screws on the band but they are slightly smaller than the genuine watch.

If you worried that someone can tell it’s a fake then avoid watches that have pins on the links because this is a dead giveaway for people who know top Swiss watches.

Water Resistance

Water Resistance
The water resistance of the genuine Swiss watches ranges from none to 12000 meters. It may surprise some people that some genuine Swiss watches aren’t any water resistance at all. When you buy a replica watch you have to check the water resistance level of the genuine and compare it to the replica level.

Most Asian made replicas are NOT water resistance and some of their top quality models can be water resistant up to 5 meters. That is the highest level we ever seen in Asian replicas.

If you pay $200 to $300 for a replica watch then don’t expect to swim, or even shower in it. But if you pay $500 to $600 for a high quality Asian made replica, you should be able to at least wash your hands wearing it.

Genuine Swiss made replicas are water resistance up to 300 meters depending on the model. We have tested dozens of Swiss replicas and the lowest water resistance level we ever found, on waterproof models, was 100 meters with 300 meters been the highest. However, a very important aspect to keep in mind when putting any watch in the water is that the crown is screwed on TIGHT. That is another reason why you should not try opening the back of the watch yourself, because if you don’t screw it back on properly, water will get in. For more info on the replicas waterproofness read our “Waterproof Replicas” article.

Weight

Weight
A lot of people can tell the difference between a real and fake by feeling the weight and solidness of the watch. This is a good way to compare, but you need to be careful because there are watches made out of titanium or synthetic or even ceramic alloys that are extremely light weight. But generally if it feels flimsy and light compared to the genuine, then it’s a dead giveaway.

Most Asian made replicas are unacceptable in their weights. They are much lighter than the genuine, and it is a dead giveaway if you have held the real one before. Higher quality Asian replicas can be about 70-85% as heavy as genuine watches. The difference in weight is because the quality of the materials is much lower, so the weight is lighter.

Genuine Swiss made replicas are 100% the weight of the genuine so it is impossible to tell the difference even if you hold them side by side.

Warranty

Warranty
Warranty is by far the most overlooked part of the replica watches. You have to realize that the specs don’t mean anything if there is no warranty policy to back them up. The warranty policy that the dealers offer to their customers is always parallel to the warranty offered by the supplier. No dealer repairs the watches themselves.

Asian made replicas have warranty policies no longer than 30-180 days, depending on the dealer and the watch quality.

Genuine Swiss made replicas always carry the Swiss standard 1 year warranty. Any replica with a less than 1 year warranty is just not Swiss made but Asian made.

In the last years a few Swiss replica dealers offers an amazing 4 years warranty for their Swiss made replicas and this is a big advantage even compared to the genuine Swiss brands that offers only up to 2 years of warranty.

Markings And Engravings

Markings And Engravings
A very important aspect of the replica watch is the detail and quality of its markings and engravings. You have to realize thought that the Swiss watch companies slightly change their markings or engravings every few years. So it’s very hard to distinguish the genuine from the replica by comparing their markings or engravings because even the details of the same genuine model vary depending on the production year.

Asian made replicas has huge differences on their markings and engravings because their attention to detail is very low and each manufacturer copies a different year-series of the watch.

Swiss made replicas looks identical to the genuine watch because the Swiss replica manufacturers pay huge attention to the details and every year they update their models according to the changes made to genuine watch.

Bands

Bands
Diamonds found on many genuine Swiss watches and on replicas as well. They are placed on the faces, the band, the case or the bezel. Genuine Swiss watches that use real diamonds are very expensive. Since real diamonds are too expensive to be used on replicas, the replica manufactures are using other materials on their diamond models.

On Asian made replicas diamonds vary from plastic crystal to mineral stones and to low quality cubic Zirconia stones on their highest quality models. Plastic crystals usually fall off or scratch and they tend to look fake because light does not reflect from them crisply, and you can see the dull surfaces of the plastic.

Mineral crystals are better than the plastics, they stay on longer, they tend to scratch and will eventually crack or fall off if banged hard against something. Upon close inspection they look fake because they don’t nearly have the glare and light reflection of a diamond.

Genuine Swiss made replicas carry top quality cubic Zirconia stones or real Moisanite diamonds. Highest quality cubic Zirconia stones look almost the same as diamonds but they tend to cloud up after a while, and must be polished to maintain their glare.
Moisanite diamonds look exactly like the real diamonds and they even reflect the light better than the real diamonds. Replicas with Moisanite diamonds definitely worth the extra money compared to the ones with cubic Zirconia stones.

Stainless Steel

Stainless Steel
Stainless steel is the most common form of finish found on replicas with big differences in steel quality. Low quality Asian made replicas usually have a copper base metal that is plated with a thin layer of steel. Slowly the steel layer wears off and the watch is useless because you are noticing the copper underneath.

Higher quality Asian made replicas use 316F stainless steel quality but the shape and dimensions of the case is out of proportion because of the stainless steel difficulty in molding the perfect dimensions.

Genuine Swiss made replicas are solid 440 or 904L stainless steel. Their shape, dimension, weight and feel is 100% same as genuine. 904L is a very hard type of steel requiring special machines and craftsmanship to work with and so replicas made out of this type of steel are more expensive and you won’t be able to tell the difference even if you put the genuine one with it side by side.

Chronographs

Chronographs
Stainless steel is the most common form of finish found on replicas with big differences in steel quality. Low quality Asian made replicas usually have a copper base metal that is plated with a thin layer of steel. Slowly the steel layer wears off and the watch is useless because you are noticing the copper underneath.

Higher quality Asian made replicas use 316F stainless steel quality but the shape and dimensions of the case is out of proportion because of the stainless steel difficulty in molding the perfect dimensions.

Genuine Swiss made replicas are solid 440 or 904L stainless steel. Their shape, dimension, weight and feel is 100% same as genuine. 904L is a very hard type of steel requiring special machines and craftsmanship to work with and so replicas made out of this type of steel are more expensive and you won’t be able to tell the difference even if you put the genuine one with it side by side.

Prices

Prices
Asian made replicas with automatic movements range in price from $89-500 depending on the quality and the dealer. Genuine Swiss made replicas sell for $900 to $1500 depending on the model and the manufacturer. Usually watches with Swiss chronograph movements or with Zirconia-Moisanite diamonds are priced higher.
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